NLRB Extends… Yet Again… Employee Rights Posting Requirement

Employment Law Newsletter

In an earlier issue we advised that the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) had issued a final rule requiring most private-sector employers to conspicuously post a notice of employee rights to unionization in the workplace. The posting requirement was to take effect on November 14, 2011, but in October the NLRB postponed the posting requirement until January 31, 2012.

Since then there have been several legal challenges to the NLRB’s authority to compel employers to post a notice of unionization rights. Recently, a federal judge hearing one of the challenges advised the NLRB that she needed more time to consider the parties’ briefs and oral arguments before deciding the case, and would enjoin the implementation of the posting requirement if the NLRB did not voluntarily extend the effective date. On December 23, 2011, the NLRB announced that it would adjourn the effective date of the posting requirement a second time, to April 30, 2012. The extension will give the courts additional time to thoroughly review whether the NLRB exceeded its delegated authority in the rulemaking process.

Employers now have a bit more breathing room before posting the Notification of Employee Rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), an 11 x 17 notice that, among other things, advises employees of their right to organize, join and assist a union, bargain collectively, discuss wages and other terms and conditions of employment, and describes certain employer activities that are considered illegal under the NLRA. A failure to post the required notice by the new April 13, 2012, deadline may result in sanctions for an unfair labor practice.

We will keep you posted on whether the NLRB’s rule survives the legal challenges and the new deadline takes effect.

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